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    US embassy 'sonic attack' cases 'the placebo effect in reverse' 
    #1
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    swilow's Avatar
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    Really one of the weirder stories out there:

    US embassy 'sonic attack' cases 'the placebo effect in reverse', mass hysteria expert says



    An expert in mass psychogenic illness has told the ABC's Signal daily news podcast that a string of mysterious illnesses among US diplomats is caused by a form of "mass hysteria", rather than by a previously unknown type of sonic weaponry.

    There have now been 26 Americans confirmed by the US State Department to have been affected by the mysterious condition, with cases reported in Cuba, China, Uzbekistan and ? in the past few days ? Singapore.

    The Singapore case has since been described as a false alarm, but US officials remain on high alert; the State Department has now implemented a policy of immediately investigating any reports from staff of suspicious sounds or unexplained symptoms out of "an abundance of caution".

    Since the phenomenon was first documented in Cuba in 2016, US diplomats have reported symptoms including headaches, nausea, vertigo and temporary hearing loss, with tests of some suggesting physical changes to the brain's white-matter tracts, which allow parts of the brain to communicate.

    The US State Department confirmed last year it was investigating the possibility that US diplomats were being deliberately targeted in "acoustic" attacks, but New Zealand-based medical sociologist Robert Bartholomew ? who specialises in mass psychogenic illness ? has told The Signal podcast he doubts nefarious foreign weaponry is involved.

    "I am convinced that what we're dealing with is a case of mass hysteria and mass suggestion," he said.

    "Sonic weapons cannot cause concussions, or white-matter tract changes ? it is physically impossible.

    "For me this whole case can be summed up in a single sentence: 'when you hear the sound of hoofbeats in the night, first think 'horses', not 'zebras'.

    "These people at the State Department are thinking, "unicorns" ? they've gone for the most exotic hypothesis, and one that's scientifically impossible [because] sonic weapons cannot cause these conditions."
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    #2
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    I thought the people in Cuba had actual damage.
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